Date of Award


Document Type


Primary Advisor

Dr. Jeff Childers

Secondary Advisor

Dr. Samjung Kang-Hamilton


This doctor of ministry thesis presents the results of a project to develop a process whereby the sermon would be enhanced for listeners at the North Street Church of Christ in Nacogdoches, Texas, so that preaching would be more effective in leading to transformation. The theology and methodology of John Wesley were utilized as a lens by which to think about and implement this practice.

The intervention involved a six-week session with a focus group that represented a cross-section of the congregation. Participants in this group were asked to engage in a lectio divina exercise on a particular text daily, journal about the experience, listen attentively to the sermon on the same text on Sunday morning, and meet with a group of others who were engaged in the same practices for the purpose of discussion. Group members were to propose ways in which they might be able to implement, in the coming week, what they had learned. Each was encouraged to choose one of those possible implementations and practice it. The following meeting would begin with a discussion of the implementation.

Evaluation of the process revealed that such preparation before the sermon, engagement with others about the sermon, and practicing lessons learned helped to bring about transformation in the lives of the participants. In addition, the process also revealed that the diversity of the group contributed significantly to the learning and growth of the participants. The thesis concludes with suggestions for the elders in how to utilize this process going forward.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.